‘Screaming’ heard from GOP’s private Senate meeting on border bill, calls for McConnell’s ouster reemerge

GOP senators were reportedly heard “screaming” from behind closed doors as they sought to save face amid fallout from their “bipartisan” border deal.

(Video: Fox News)

Demonstrating that they haven’t learned what happens when you lie down with pigs, Senate Republicans have appeared to back themselves into a corner with the so-called “border security” bill. As a result, efforts to forge a path forward were said to grow contentious despite statements from Senate Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and negotiator (read sacrificial lamb) Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma.

Reporting from Washington, D.C. Tuesday, Fox News Capitol Hill correspondent Aishah Hasnie detailed to “America’s Newsroom” co-host Dana Perino, “Well the past 24 hours have been nothing short of stunning here.”

“We knew that this border deal was dead on arrival in the House, but it’s not likely to make it out of the Senate at all. Republicans are poised to tank a procedural vote on this tomorrow, and it’s likely the author of this big bipartisan deal — the Republican author is likely to vote no on it as well, as well as a Senate…minority leader,” she explained of the proposal that had a majority of $118 billion getting sent overseas while allowing a minimum of nearly 2 million illegal entries into the U.S. annually.

“Senate Republicans met last night in a closed-door meeting which got so heated, Dana, at times that myself and other reporters could actually hear screaming coming from inside the room,” claimed Hasnie. “When leader Mitch McConnell emerged from the room, he told me that he had a great discussion and that the conference will keep on talking.”

“Senator James Lankford, the lead GOP negotiator on this, told me it is clear that the majority of the conference is not ready to vote on this thing, but that there is still interest in adding real amendments and shaping it into something, perhaps, that they can stomach,” she added of the Oklahoma congressman’s claims. “He insists though, the bill is not dead, but it looks like he may also vote no tomorrow just for the sake of party unity.”

While Lankford’s take on the “not dead” bill appeared to be meant as a positive, his colleague from Utah, Sen. Mike Lee said much the same in a negative tone as he posted on X captioning a previous post on stopping the border bill, “It’s not dead yet.”

As Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer of New York was expected to bring the bill for a vote Tuesday, Texas Rep. Chip Roy (R) summed up the contrast between the “bipartisan” deal presented by Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy (D), Arizona Sen. Krysten Sinema (I) and Lankford when compared to the House of Representatives’ Secure the Border Act.

“Democrats know that the Senate border ‘deal’ was never going to go anywhere. They did this purposefully to blame Republicans for the open borders they created by complaining that we won’t take 3 punches to the head instead of 6,” wrote Roy with the hashtag “NoSenateBorderDeal.”

Meanwhile, Murphy did exactly that as he took to X Monday evening and wrote, “Honestly, this is so embarrassing. You told us you wanted a bipartisan border fix. You appointed the Republican negotiator. WE GOT A DEAL. Stop the drama — do you want to fix the border or do you want to keep the border chaotic to help [former President Donald] Trump? Just decide [please].”

The apparent attempt at shrewd swamp tactics may well have backfired beyond political talking points though as new calls to remove McConnell as leader rang out. Hasnie reported Tuesday that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz (R) said “it’s time for MCCONNELL  to go,” and reminded “He wanted new leadership in the last leader election.”

Similarly, Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley (R) posted to X, “Wouldn’t it be nice if Republican leadership in the Senate cared as much about Republicans as they do about Chuck Schumer. Just an observation.”

Kevin Haggerty

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